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    Wheat harvest in Russia's Omsk Region

    Going With the Grain: Russian Farmers Boost Potential Amid Country's Record Crop

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    The potential of Russian farmers and agricultural entities will continue to increase now that Russia is once again one of the world's largest grain exporters, Sergey Myasoyedov, Vice Rector of the Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration under the President of Russia, told Sputnik.

    In an interview with Sputnik, Sergey Myasoyedov, Vice Rector of the Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration under the President of Russia, said that Russia has re-establishing itself as one of the world's largest grain exporters, adding significantly to the potential of Russia's agricultural sector. 

    The interview came after the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization raised its forecast for this year's global cereal production and projected a record harvest for Russia.

    Earlier, the US Department of Agriculture said that Russian grain exports now exceed those of the US, with 35 mln tons exported in 2016 (US grain exports totaled 31.5 mln tons).

    In 2014 the US was the world's Number One grain exporter, followed by Canada and Russia; in 2016 Russia, for the first time in its modern history, topped the list of the world's leading grain exporters.

    "We should realistically assess the situation. Europe will not lift the anti-Russian sanctions in the next few years due to the ongoing Ukrainian crisis.In other words, there is an opportunity to accelerate the potential of our [grain] exporters so that our farmers and major agricultural [entities] can build their muscles," Myasoyedov said.

    He also said that he is happy about what is not going on in Russia's agricultural sector. He recalled that Russia returned to the club of the largest grain exporters after the country had sold arms and bought grain for 25 years under Soviet rule. 

    "We got grain from Canada and the United States. But Russia, as a country that traditionally exported food and grain, finally managed to come back as the largest [grain] exporter," Myasoyedov said. 

    He was echoed by economics expert Vladimir Rozhankovsky, who in an interview with Sputnik touted Russia becoming the world's leader in grain exports.

    "Britons call it a windfall, an unexpected income that was never planned. Apart from wheat, other cereals are also of high quality and are in line with international standards. All this volume can be successfully sold by Russia," he said.

    Russia sells grain to 130 countries, above all Egypt, Turkey and Iran. The country's grain exports increased considerably in 2002, making it one of the top ten grain exporters worldwide.

    In 2016, Russia expects to take in some 64 mln tons of wheat, with the total grain harvest estimated at between 106 and 111 million tons.

    This means that this year's harvest could exceed the previous record of 108.2 million tons produced in 2008. This is a recurring trend across most of the agricultural sector, with poultry and pork meat production tripling and doubling, respectively, since 2006.

    In July, a source in the Russian Agriculture Ministry said that Russia exported a record 33,893 mln tons of grain between 2015 and 2016, with its export volume standing well above the 30,508 mln tons exported during the previous agricultural year.


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